Union Home Ministry has amended the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) giving certain relaxations such as allowing relatives to send more money to India freely, granting Indians the ability to receive up to ₹10 lakh every year from their relatives living in foreign countries without informing the authorities. Previously, this limit was set at ₹1 lakh.
The government has also stop the requirement that an individual/organization obtain foreign cash declare such contributions on its official website every quarter.
If the amount exceeds, the amount exceeds, the individuals will now have 90 days to inform the government instead of 30 days earlier, said the home ministry.
“In the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Rules, 2011, in rule 6, — for the words “one lakh rupees”, the words “ten lakh rupees” shall be substituted; and for the words “thirty days”, the words “three months” shall be substituted,” said in the news.
The amended rule now allows relatives to send 10 lakh rupees without informing the government. If the amount exceeds, the individuals will now have three months to inform the government against 30-days earlier.
Earlier, it was said that “any person receiving a foreign contribution in excess of ₹1 lakh or equivalent thereto in a financial year from any of his relatives shall inform the central government (details of funds) within 30 days from the receipt of such contribution”.
• In rule 6 of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Rules 2011, the phrases ten lakh rupees shall be substituted for one lakh rupees and thirty days shall be substituted for thirty days and one lakh rupees, respectively.
• It previously specified that anyone receiving foreign contributions from any of their relatives in excess of ₹1 lakh or the equivalent in a financial year (details of funds) must notify the central government within 30 days of receiving such contributions.
• The disclosure of receiving foreign funds from relatives is covered by Rule 6.
• Rule 9 deals with application of getting registration or prior authorisation under the FCRA to receive donations. This time frame expired thirty days ago.
• Similarly, the updated regulations have given people and organisations or NGOs 45 days to inform the home ministry about bank account (s) that are to be utilised for utilisation of such monies.
• Provision “b” of Rule 13—which required the central government to publish on its website quarterly declarations of foreign funds—along with donor information, the amount received, the date of receipt, etc has-been “omitted” by the government.
In case of a change of bank account, address, name, aims, or key members of the organisation obtaining foreign funds, the home ministry has given the allowance of 45 days to inform it, instead of the 15 days previously. Previously, offences such as accepting hospitality from a foreign entity without informing, using foreign funds for administrative purposes beyond the legal limit, receiving money in an account other than the one designated for foreign funds, and four others were compoundable. Failure to notify about receipt of foreign funds, establishment of bank accounts, failure to put information on a website, and other FCRA offences have now become compoundable. The penalty ranges from Rs 10,000 to Rs 1 lakh, or 5% of foreign funds, whichever is greater, as said in ZeeNews.